News and notes from the Cleveland Indians, who return home tomorrow night to begin a long home stand. The Tribe went 7-2 on their recent road trip, and sit 1 game out of first place in the AL Central.
• DH Travis Hafner is in the last year of his contract and is off to a great start in trying to reverse his mediocre numbers from the last few years. Hafner has reached base in 14 of his last 18 plate appearances, is hitting .357 and leads the American League with a .509 on-base percentage.
• C Carlos Santana, who finished third in the American League with 97 walks last year, is tied for second this year with 13. The Indians, who finished 17th in the majors in walks last year, lead with 76 this year.
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• RHP Chris Perez blew a three-run lead in his first save situation of the season, on Opening Day. But since then Perez is 6-for-6 in save situations and has held opposing batters to a .130 average.
• LHP David Huff has been activated off the disabled list and optioned to Class AAA Columbus. Huff had been on the DL since March 30 with a strained right hamstring. In a rehab start for Class AA Akron on April 20, he pitched four scoreless innings and gave up one hit and one walk while striking out three.
• RHP Justin Masterson has been very shaky since striking out 10, walking one and giving up one run on two hits in eight innings on Opening Day. In his last three starts, including his loss to Oakland on Sunday, Masterson is 0-2 with a 9.88 ERA, with 11 walks and 21 hits allowed in 13 2/3 innings. “He’s struggled with his command,” manager Manny Acta said. “It’s all about attacking the strike zone.”